The first national Peru flag was designed in 1820. It was the year when Jose de San Martin came with his army of the Andes from Argentina and Chile. He designed the Peru flag combining red and white. He said that he chose those colors as he saw a flock of flamingos take wing when he arrived in Peru. The form of the Peru flag was quite strange. It had a diagonal division making two white and two red triangles with a coat of arms in the middle. On March 15, 1822 another flag was adopted, when the partisans established themselves at the reins of the country. The fact that this flag looked similar to the Spanish one led to confusion, which convinced them to modify it soon (on May 31). From the Peru flag with equal red-white-red horizontal stripes and the red sun – the Inca emblem – in the center, it turned to flag with vertical stripes with the sun emblem in the middle.
In 1825, on February 25, the current design was finally established: the red-white-red stripes of the former Peru flag remained but the sun in the middle got to be replaced with a new coat of arms. The shield on the Peru flag is surrounded by a wreath of palm and laurel, surmounted by another. Moreover, it has three distinct parts which contain emblems of national wealth and pride. In the first quarter there appears a free-roaming camelid symbolizing the rich fauna of Peru as well as the freedom of the natural world and the animals's beauty. In the second quarter of the shield on the Peru flag, a chichona tree is present. The bark of this tree is the source of quinine. The bottom part of the shield shows a cornucopia which spills gold and silver coins which stand for the mineral richness of this country.
In addition to these symbols on the Peru flag, the symbolism of the colors is as follows: white equals purity whereas red stands for the blood of the country’s patriots. When it is displayed by the government, the Peru flag also incorporates the coat of arms described above, in the middle. Regarding the size of the Peru flag, you should know that it has a width-to-length of 2 to 3 ratio. Like in other countries, the civil Peru flag flown by private citizens does not display the coat of arms which is limited to the use by officials and for official (government) purposes. The Peru flag must be flown by the citizens on national day no matter how poor the hut, every building must fly it. This national day is actually a two-day official celebration on July 28-29.